As a member of Warner Home Video super exclusive Blu Ray Elite team, I get access to some of the greatest movies ever made. My mission is to give you how these movies fit in the life of a Dad.
We now move into the Classics portion of the our reviews. If you haven’t at least heard of Casablanca then I really feel bad for you. During a brief period in college, Divina and I were really into watching as many of the American Film Institute’s top 100 films. Perennially in the top 5 movies in history, Casablanca is one of the few films in my opinion from that era which really holds up today. Since WWII has been co-opted as the background for so many movies over the years you can almost forget that this was filmed during the actual war. The performances are top rate and most importantly the story of Humphrey Bogart’s Rick Blaine (the original Han Solo) and Ingrid Bergman’s IIsa during this time of unrest still has the ability to affect people.
Dad Factor: While not a film I would pick out to watch on my own, Casablanca has a lot going for it, for starters it is considered one of the greatest films in history, second, it has so many famous lines and scenes even if it is your first time watching you will feel like you have already seen the movie and it has a great story. Finally, in terms of historical perspective it is a great movie to see to get a view of the Hollywood process during WWII and the portrayal of Germany and the Nazi party. While you have to really be in the right mood to watch it definitely is worth the time.
Kid Factor: A non factor, I doubt that most kids would be able to sit still for even the first 10 minutes.
Date Factor: A classic date movie, even more now that it has been restored to unheard of audio and visual quality. It has all the qualities that make a great date movie: a classic love triangle set during a war, a strong female lead and bushel of romantic moments.
Cool Blu Ray Features: While not a specific feature, the Blu-Ray release has a total visual make over. Honestly it looks amazing, especially considering that the first time I watched it was on VHS. Also included in the Blu-Ray release is two commentaries by famous film critic Roger Ebert and Film Historian Rudy Behlmer. In addition, there are deleted scenes, outtakes and cartoons. The disc also has a number of documentary featurettes about the film, the actors and the director.
Bottom Line: This is definitely a must have if only for the historical and cultural importance of the film. It doesn’t hurt that the Blu-Ray version is probably the best the film has every sounded and looked ever.
Disclosure: I received a copy of the movie on Blu Ray for my participation in the Warner Brothers Blu Ray elite program. These are my unbiased opinions.